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Mercedes-AMG Petronas Motorsport conclude the first week of pre-season testing in Barcelona with over 600 laps in four days
Date: Thursday, 21 February 2019
Drivers: Lewis Hamilton (AM), #valtteribottas (PM)
Circuit: Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya
Circuit Length: 4.655 km
Laps Completed: Lewis 58, Valtteri 57, Total 115
Distance Covered: Lewis 270 km, Valtteri 265 km, Total 535 km
Best Lap Time: Lewis 1:17.977, Valtteri 1:17.857
On the last day of the first week of pre-season testing, both Lewis and Valtteri set their fastest laps yet in the Mercedes-AMG #F1 W10 EQ Power+. The team focused on building its understanding of the 2019 tyres today, looking at grip and balance differences between the softer compounds.
It was quite cold in the morning which meant that it was a little bit difficult with the tyres for everyone. In general, the car was feeling better today and is coming together. However, we still have to keep on digging deep, analysing the data and the changes that we are making. The reliability has been really solid which is a great showing of all the hard work that everyone in the factory has done. But we have to keep on pushing, the competition looks very strong. The weather has been good all week so we could get through our programme and it was great to see the fans out there. I’m looking forward to coming back next week.
The first week of testing was really good for us in terms of reliability, we got a lot of mileage in with the new car and didn’t experience any major issues. Today we did some shorter runs, seeing how the W10 works when you try to extract a little bit more performance out of it. We’ve been making progress throughout the entire week, the car felt better every single day. We’re now looking forward to next week when we will hopefully make even more progress. Many thanks to the entire team, it was a good first test. Now we’re all hungry to improve even more in the second test.
Lewis had a tricky start to the day as the track was so cold it was difficult to get the used tyres to work. To avoid doing any damage, we waited around for a while for the surface to warm before getting into the programme. It’s the first time we’ve tried the softer tyres on the W10 and today was just a first look to understand the grip and balance differences between them. Valtteri’s programme in the afternoon was quite similar to Lewis, running through the same compounds. We’ve had a very productive few days and the car has run very reliably which has helped us get through the programme. It’s clear from this week that we’re going to have strong competition this year with Ferrari and Red Bull but hopefully we’ll have another good test next week which will help us with our final preparations for Melbourne.
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